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Thread: Pride and Prejudice

  1. #1
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    Pride and Prejudice

    What are your thoughts on why Austen only focuses on specific social classes while leaving characters in lower classes under-developed?
    It seems, as mentioned by many critics, that Jane Austen does not give any detail on the lives of people in lower social classes. They are a minor part of the novel, and seem to just go on with their daily routines without any development.

  2. #2
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    That would be true, Austin's main characters are those of the upper classes, and outside of minor roles, the lower classes have no part in the story. She has no need to develop the characters further, thus, she doesn't.

  3. #3
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    Austen is not alone. Many a Henry James novel, for instance, ignores the lower classes. Should every novel attend to class?
    "Love does not alter the beloved, it alters itself"

  4. #4
    darcys-tango
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    Succesful authors write best about subjects they know. Jane Austen herself was from a decent middle-class family and probably unfamiliar with what was basically lower working class environs. She didn't decry that class, just didn't write about them. If you read a book about less priveleged levels; Thomas Hardy's works for instance, or Dickens, you wouldn't ask why they don't mention gentry much surely?

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